Can you be punished if you don’t wipe the snow off your car in Virginia?

While some states have laws requiring drivers to get ice and snow off the roof, Virginia isn’t one of them

You will likely need your ice scraper again this week and it's important to take the time to clear the snow off your car before driving.

LYNCHBURG, Va. – When it comes to getting snow off the car, we know it’s important to clear the windshield. However, we’re busy people with places to go, and the rest of the car doesn’t always get the same attention.

“I was driving in it all Monday morning when the snow came,” Jeremy Lee says.

Monday was proof of that. Drivers like Lee say they saw several snow-covered cars on the road and wondered about the trouble it could cause.

“Once you get on the 501′s and the 460′s of the area, I think with the speed you’re going it gets a little more dangerous,” he says.

While some states have laws requiring drivers to get ice and snow off the roof, Virginia isn’t one of them. However, that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t take the time.

“Let’s say you’re on the highway going 50, 50 plus miles an hour and that happens to you. You instantly lose all visibility on the road,” Lynchburg District VDOT Communications Director Len Stevens says. “There’s the shock of the crash that could get you off the road. You don’t want to be responsible for that.”

Stevens adds you should also be sure to get your headlights and taillights, that way you can see and other drivers can see you.

“When we have road conditions that are not ideal, all of this gets more important,” Stevens adds.

Experts say while it’s not illegal to have snow on your roof, there is a chance you could be sued for negligence if ice flies off your car and damages or hurts someone else.


About the Author:

Kortney joined the 10 News team as a Lynchburg Bureau Reporter in May 2021.